In 2007, OnStar enters its seventh generation, and has a lot more features than it did ten years ago when the original systems were installed in vehicles as a dealer option.
More than 60 percent of 2007 GM vehicles have OnStar installed as standard equipment. By the 2008 model year nearly every GM vehicle sold to a retail customer will be OnStar equipped.
OnStar Service HighlightsOnStar Turn-by-Turn Navigation, full GPS navigation, is new for 2007. To use the feature, press the blue OnStar button and tell the person who answers where you want to go. The advisor will punch your destination into a computer, and then send commands to your radio speakers. A voice will guide you to your destination.
Additional GPS-related OnStar features are in the works and will be introduced as they're ready -- like information to help you locate gas stations that sell E85 fuel.
OnStar Vehicle Diagnostics is a service that checks some of your vehicle's operating systems, collects maintenance and service information and summarizes the data. GM will send you a monthly Email that describes what the system learned about your car or truck, or you can log-in to your online account to view the reports.
It's not unusual for drivers to panic when a check engine light comes on while they're driving down the road. With OnStar, you can push the blue button and ask the advisor to run an on-the-spot diagnostics report to find out why the light came and what you should do about it.
OnStar's Advanced Automatic Crash Notification calls the communications center for you if your vehicle is involved in a frontal, rear or side-impact crash, regardless of whether or not the air bags deploy. The OnStar advisor receives a pretty good idea of the severity of the crash, enough to pass on detailed information to local emergency personnel.
OnStar Hands-Free Calling is a voice-activated system that's integrated into your vehicle. It's easy to sync your cell phone with it -- I doubt that you'll even need to look at the instruction manual to get the feature up and running.
OnStar's Stolen Vehicles service kicks in to help pinpoint your car or truck's location if it's stolen.
With the Door Unlocking feature an OnStar advisor can send a remote signal to open doors in vehicles equipped with power locks.
OnStar PackagesThe basic OnStar package is free for one year after buying your vehicle and enhanced service packages are available at an additional cost. GM maintains a Web site to keep you up-to-date with OnStar capabilities and options.